Court hears teen sold stolen phone for £60

A TEENAGER used his passport to sell a stolen mobile for £60, a court heard on Friday (May 20).

Eastbourne magistrates heard that Marc Russell sold a Blackberry which had been pinched on a night out by a 17-year-old friend, who cannot be named for legal reasons. Russell, a 19-year-old painter and decorator, offered to sell the phone for a slice of the profits on February 24.

Russell, of Myrtle Road in Eastbourne, used his own passport to sign a disclaimer at Fonetech to try and prove that it was his phone.

When the mobile was reported stolen to the police, they found that Russell had sold the phone on.

Although he denied it in police interview, Russell pleaded guilty to receiving stolen goods and fraud by false representation.

The 17-year-old, appearing in court charged with theft, pleaded not guilty and will face trial in youth court.

Prosecutor Heather Salvage said the 17-year-old had detached himself from his group of friends – including Russell – to talk to a girl. He then slid his hand into her pocket and pinched the mobile.

Ms Salvage said, “He said, ‘you’ve been mugged’, she thought he was messing around.”

But when the phone was not returned she patted the group of boys down before calling police to report the theft.

Helen Wallace, defending, said although Russell had tried to persuade the youth to return the phone, he had gone along to Fonetech in the Enterprise Centre the next day with the co-defendant.

Russell was carrying his passport and offered to sell the phone for a share of the profits.

Magistrates slapped Russell with a three-month community order. He is to be at his home in Myrtle Road between 8pm and 6am and he was ordered to pay £85 in costs.